Vehicle collision kills one at Lehigh plant

A fiery vehicle collision claimed the life of one employee Saturday at the Lehigh Hanson Cement Plant in Cupertino, located just south of Los Altos and Los Altos Hills.

Cupertino resident Jose Rivas, 56, died when he became trapped inside a pick-up truck that caught fire after colliding with a front loader tractor, according to the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office.

Witnesses reported the incident at approximately 9:30 a.m., according to the Sheriff’s Office. Deputies, California Highway Patrol officers and Santa Clara County firefighters arriving on scene at the Stevens Creek Boulevard facility attempted to rescue Rivas, but he was pronounced dead at the scene. No other injuries were reported.

The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health and the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration are investigating the incident, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

Los Altos businessman pleads guilty to one charge in federal 'Ponzi' case


Former Los Altos resident Mark Feathers reached an agreement with federal prosecutors Dec. 20 and entered a plea of guilty to one count of mail fraud, among the 29 total counts originally brought against him in a 2014 indictment.

A sentencing hearing was set for March 2. The details of the plea agreement, and an anticipated sentencing range, remained unavailable as of the Town Crier’s press deadline. The maximum sentence for one count of mail fraud includes 20 years in prison and a fine of at least $250,000.

K9 cop connects suspected burglar to crime

A convicted felon from Morgan Hill faces a slew of charges after a Mountain View Police Department canine helped his handlers connect the man to a series of New Year’s Eve burglaries.

Tonato Mills
Tonato Mills

Officers arrested Tonato Mills Sunday (Dec. 31) and charged him with burglary, prowling, possession of burglary tools, possession of stolen property, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of a controlled substance and parole violation. He was booked into the Santa Clara County Jail and held without bail.

Officers found and detained Mills, 30, near the intersection of Tyrella and Flynn avenues while searching for a suspect seen breaking into vehicles at a housing complex in the 100 block of East Middlefield Road at approximately 3:30 a.m. Sunday, according to police reports. Police dog Thor earned props for connecting Mills to a Honda sedan parked near a rear gate at the complex. The car allegedly contained burglary tools, stolen mail, methamphetamine drugs and a meth pipe.

During a search of Mills’ home on Monday, officials uncovered gun ammunition and additional property they believe he stole, according to police.

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ATM set ablaze after restaurant burglary

St. Francis football
Megan V. Winslow / Los Altos Town Crier
Plywood covers the entrance to Michael’s at Shoreline Restaurant Wednesday.

A stolen truck, a battered restaurant and a torched ATM have left burning questions for Mountain View Police detectives tasked with deciphering who is responsible for their destruction.

Reports of the ATM came first, and officers responded to the 1900 block of Charleston Avenue at approximately 4:30 a.m. Tuesday (Jan. 2) to find the abandoned machine, which someone had set alight, according to the police department. During the ensuing investigation, an employee of nearby Michael’s at Shoreline called police to report that the North Shoreline Boulevard restaurant had been burglarized, the front glass doors shattered and the ATM from the lobby stolen. A quarter-mile away, officers located a flatbed work truck likely used as the battering ram to gain access to the restaurant. The truck’s owner had reported it stolen from Cupertino.

Detectives are actively investigating the incident and additional details about the crime were unavailable as of Tuesday afternoon.

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Motorcyclist dies in crash with Google bus

St. Francis football
Megan V. Winslow / Los Altos Town Crier
Traffic passes a memorial for Joseph Lopez at the intersection of Shoreline Boulevard and Plymouth Street where the Mountain View motorcyclist died Dec. 27 following a collision with a Google commuter bus.

A 30-year-old San Jose man died last week after succumbing to injuries sustained when his motorcycle collided with a Google commuter bus on Shoreline Boulevard near the tech campus in Mountain View.

The Santa Clara County Medical Examiner-Coroner Office identified the victim of the crash as Joseph Lopez. No one else was injured in the incident, according to the Mountain View Police Department.

Witnesses reported the incident at approximately 5:20 p.m. Dec. 27, according to the police department. Specific details about what transpired are forthcoming, but Lopez’s motorcycle and a bus contracted by Google collided at the intersection of Shoreline and Plymouth Street. Officers arriving at the scene discovered Lopez unresponsive, and emergency personnel pronounced him deceased a short time later. He died from multiple blunt-force trauma, according to the Medical Examiner-Coroner’s Office.

The accident disrupted traffic in the area until approximately 1 a.m. Dec. 28, when the roads reopened.

The cause of the crash is under investigation, according to the police department.

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Scammers send resident Bitcoin blackmail letter

A Los Altos resident said there may be a new scam in town – one involving blackmail and Bitcoin, an unregulated digital currency that has recently skyrocketed in value.

Stephen Wu, an attorney who specializes in information security, said he received the scam letter in the mail the week of Dec. 11.

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